Willem de Kooning and Jackson Pollock considered Hyman Bloom to be America’s first Abstract Expressionist, a label, it should be pointed out, that the artist himself rejected.
What the exhibition of Drummond and Dodd proves is that the art world was more diverse in the 1960s than has been told.
Gregory Amenoff’s paintings mix influences with knowing exuberance.
In 1952, Lois Dodd, along with four other artists, started the Tanager Gallery on East Fourth Street, near the Bowery, one of the first artist-run cooperative galleries in New York.
What do Richard Diebenkorn and John Walker have in common? When they sink their teeth into something, they aren’t likely to let it go.
In recent weeks, I have written about what I have defined as a grown-up painter, as opposed to what I called “the latest manifestation of a male adolescent painter, a clichéd archetype that gained traction in the Neo-Expressionist ‘80s, with the rise of Julian Schnabel, and has not been thrown over because lots of people still find this sort of chest thumping entertaining.”
Disclosure, in John Walker’s paintings, comes slowly. A dominant motif — zigzag stripes ranging up, down and across the canvas — colonizes the surface, establishing it as a realm of aggressively brushed abstract patterns. Then one by one, various incidentals emerge — a densely wooded island, a rocky outcropping, the flat disk of the sun — and suddenly you’re looking at a vertically tilted, crazily Cubistic landscape.
While touring a few of the many small exhibition spaces scattered throughout the city, I was pleasantly reminded that painting requires neither heroic-sized canvases nor the prestige of whitewashed airplane hangars to succeed as significant art.
Richard Walker is an observational painter who seems particularly interested in light, a concern that goes back to the Impressionists and the beginnings of modern art. However, if you think you are going to get a sugary rehash of Claude Monet, you are in for a surprise.
Like the Jack Kerouac’s three line poems, Lois Dodd is able to capture the essence of her subjects through simplicity and directness of expression.